The Meaning of Numbers: The Number 60
Part of the meaning of the number 60 is derived from the fact that it is consider the threshold of when a person enters the last major phase of their life. The Apostle Paul warned Timothy that the church should not financially support widows less than sixty years old. This was because those who were younger were considered able to remarry or strong enough to support themselves (1Timothy 5:3 - 11).
Under the Old Covenant, a sixty year old male could redeem himself from a vow of serving the Lord by paying 15 shekels to the temple. A 60 year old woman could redeem herself from such a vow for only ten shekels (Leviticus 27:1 - 2, 7). This compares to younger adult males who had to pay fifty shekels while younger women paid thirty (verses 3 - 4).
Isaac, after his wife is healed of being barren, has his first two sons (Esau and Jacob) when he is 60 years old (Genesis 25:26).
Part of the inheritance of the Israelite tribe of Manasseh were the towns of Jair which numbered sixty cities (Joshua 13:30).
King Solomon was so wealthy that his household required daily, among many other provisions, sixty measures of fine flour (1Kings 4:22).
Rehoboam, the first king over Judah after a united Israel split in two, ultimately had eighteen wives and sixty concubines (concubines were women whose kids, through the king, could not inherit the throne). These 78 females produced a total number of 28 sons and 60 daughters (2Chronicles 11:21).
King Nebuchadnezzar made an idol of gold that stood 60 cubits. He then required, on pain of death, all those whom Babylon ruled to worship it. It was Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego's refusal to indulge in idol worship that got them thrown into a fiery furnace (Daniel 3).
Paul's ministry and the number sixty
The Apostle Paul is arrested in early 58 A.D. for inciting a riot at Jerusalem's temple. He is eventually transported, under armed guard, to Caesarea so that the Romans can protect him before his case is tried. Governor Felix, however, keeps Paul in prison for two years hoping to solicit a bribe for his freedom. Luke, who frequently visits the apostle during his imprisonment, writes his gospel during this period. He also pens, with Paul's oversight, the first thirteen chapters of Acts.
The number 60 and worshipping God
Many offerings were made by the Israelites after Moses set up, anointed and sanctified God's wilderness tabernacle. Sixty rams, along with the same number of male goats and lambs that were a year old, were given as an offering when the altar was dedicated (Numbers 7:1, 88).
Jerusalem's first temple, built by King Solomon, was 60 cubits long by 20 cubits wide by 30 cubits high (1Kings 6:2, 2Chronicles 3:3).
There were at least two sizes of cubits used in the Old Testament. The first or ordinary cubit was about 17.5 inches (44.5 centimeters) long. The second, known as the long or "royal" cubit, was about 20.4 inches (51.8 centimeters) long. The royal cubit was likely used by Solomon to build Jerusalem's temple (see 2Chronicles 3:3 where a cubit "after the first measure" is used) and possibly used in the construction of Noah's Ark.
Assuming an ordinary cubit was used, the temple's 60 cubit length is equivalent to 87.5 feet (26.7 meters). If we assume a royal cubit was used, the length would be 102 feet (31.1 meters)!
Additional info on the Biblical Meaning of 60
Sarah (wife of Abraham) and the variations of her name are recorded 60 times in fifty verses of the KJV Bible. In the Old Testament, the King James spells her name Sarai seventeen times and Sarah thirty-nine times. In the New Testament, her named is spelled Sara in Romans 4:19, 9:9, Hebrews 11:11 and 1Peter 3:6. She is the most referenced woman, by name, in the entirety of Scripture.
The true meaning of Jesus' parable of the sower (Matthew 13:18 - 23, Mark 4:13 - 20) reveals some of the major responses people produce who hear God's truth. Many who hear the gospel simply reject it. Others, because of the shallowness of their faith, abandon their convictions when trials come or when they place a higher priority on worldly cares.
Those, however, who are able to allow the truth to grow inside them, can produce fruit (good works, etc.) that is thirty, sixty or a hundred times more than what they received (Matthew 13:23).